"It's one of a kind. It's the first city. It's the original. It's just a great city," said Tammy Oliver of Manayunk.
Christmas lights and cell phone screens lit up the night as the crowd enjoyed classic holiday songs and mesmerizing dances.
"I thought it was really great. I didn't know what to expect the show was going to be, so we had a lot of fun. She likes dancers so she was excited," said Valerie Steiner of Langhorne.
"I really enjoyed the dancing as well because it's very interesting the type of style they were doing," said Gavin Steiner of Langhorne.
Keeping the crowed energized - and warm - on the ones and twos was Dylan Curtis aka DJ D-ILL - a pro at just 11 years old, who was specifically requested for Saturday night's festivities.
"They wanted a kid DJ, not an old person, a kid DJ," said Dylan Curtis aka DJ D-ILL.
But the star of the night was the dazzling 40-foot tall fresh Colorado fir tree that was topped off with a liberty bell, crack and all - oh and it hid another surprise.
"For the first time in our city's history the official Philly Holiday Tree lights will be powered using wind power," said a
"No matter what your religion or how you celebrate the holidays or don't celebrate the holidays, this tree is a big kiss to Philadelphia," said Jeff Guaracino, President and CEO, Welcome America, Inc.
It was created by award-winning production designer David Korins, who had a unique approach to the base of the tree.
"It's kind of like a snow globe, and each one of the signs and cuts outs is representative of a special part of the city, so we did a lot of research and took iconic stops along the way in every neighborhood," said Korins.
It's a magnificent start to the Christmas season in a way that's uniquely Philly.
"I thought the event was great. It was fantastic. The tree lighting ceremony was awesome. All the special events. You just needed to be here," said Oliver.